Manufacturing & Production
Publishers face a myriad of choices in managing manufacturing and production. Printers have become far more competitive. Service factors have become increasingly important in the evaluation of printing services. Postal increases and fluctuations in paper pricing and availability require publishers to review alternative paper choices, suppliers and delivery methods. Rapid advances in prepress technology are presenting new electronic production options, making the proper selection of software and hardware vendors increasingly critical.
In short, manufacturing and production decisions demand the same level of creativity as those related to editorial, advertising and circulation. Lexicon can provide techniques to assist you no matter what the size or sophistication of your manufacturing requirements.
Overall Cost Management
Many publishers’ primary concern is bringing overhead and supplier costs in line with both financial objectives and the changing circumstances and conditions of their marketplace. Lexicon has developed a number of programs that will enable you to:
- Determine what you should be paying for manufacturing (in light of market demands)
- Isolate and eliminate the more significant costs that you should not have to pay
- Furnish you with computerized tools for budgeting, planning, and tracking makeup
- Provide you with the knowledge to become self-sufficient in managing costs
Magazine repackaging is an accepted, even encouraged, means of rejuvenating a publication. Manufacturing alternatives have never been greater, or more confusing to the uninitiated. We have helped publishers find innovative solutions to otherwise overwhelming challenges, whether in the selection of paper stock, printing processes, design and pre-press, or sophisticated finishing means.
Other publishers have used us to capitalize in the advantages pioneered by cable television for venturing into local markets. Whether it is called demographic binding or selective binding, this relatively new form of target marketing has tremendous potential, yet publishers have been slow to adapt to it. With computerization, methodologies are available to undertake sophisticated regional programs, yet keep overhead and supplier costs in line with revenue expectations. Previously, such an undertaking required substantial resources because of the vast number of options for producing regional forms, with the risk of excessive product cost. Lexicon can help you develop a specialized manufacturing plan (coordinated with advertising, circulation, and information systems) to achieve all the potential this technology affords.
Printing and Distribution
Your printer is an extension of your staff. While price is of great importance, so is the printer’s ability to understand and respond to your specific service needs. Lexicon will help to ensure that your requirements for price, location, equipment, technology, and scheduling are met by the appropriate vendor. In addition, we can assist you in conducting an objective review of your distribution system and alternatives with the aim of lowering costs while improving delivery time.
Equally important, we will work with you to negotiate the best possible contracts to fit your particular financial parameters, whether this means improving on existing arrangements and relations or locating printers that are better qualified to handle your work. We ensure that the printer offers you the most competitive bid available with thorough computer analysis of bids to isolate strengths and weaknesses over the course any agreement. We also look for ways of cutting costs through innovative manufacturing plans that capitalize on the capabilities of the printer. We can also assist with technical direction when you wish to implement publication changes that perhaps push the outer limits of technology. Our approach is custom-tailored to ensure that your needs are best served.
Whether you use five or five thousand tons of paper annually, the selection of weight, grade, and supplier is critical to controlling costs. Paper usually represents a substantial portion of the final cost of your printed product. There are, however, other factors besides price that weigh greatly in your paper decisions:
- What are your quality requirements?
- How is your publication’s image dependant upon paper selections?
- What is the impact of paper choice on your budget?
- What are the paper requirements for the printing process you are using?
- What is the best source of paper for your specific publishing activities?
- Answering these questions and selecting the right paper for your magazine is a decision that can be made with great precision
Driven by the rapid advancement in desktop technology, the foundation of the prepress industry is undergoing dramatic changes. As the structure of the industry changes, so too do publisher relationships with service vendors. In addition, service bureaus and many publication printers now offer on-line integration for typesetting and preparation. Which system is best for your publication? How do you pick a service bureau? How do you ensure the most cost-effective management of that service bureau?
Publishers must recognize that their relationship and reliance on service bureaus will change and continue to evolve as desktop technology advances. Typesetters and color prepress houses vary in their expertise, knowledge and equipment.
Print reproduction continues to improve with better materials and equipment and standardization. Yet quality remains a paramount concern as the publisher’s own operations must increasingly account for digital-to-film (and later digital-to-plate) production. Lexicon can help you find the answers for your publishing needs.
Paper selection…prepress activities…printing and distribution: a variety of choices you face in making critical manufacturing decisions. Let Lexicon put its experience to work, securing your competitive edge in manufacturing.